What is Cerebral Palsy?

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a grouping of non-progressive motor conditions in which brain damage results in the loss or impairment of body movement, reflexes, balance, muscle control, muscle coordination, muscle tone, and posture. This neurological disorder often develops as the result of a brain injury inflicted before, during, or after delivery. In the term cerebral palsy, “cerebral” refers to the cerebrum, which is the affected area of the brain, and “palsy” refers to any of the resulting movement disorders.

Throughout this section, our team of Michigan cerebral palsy lawyers and professionals will help you become acquainted with everything you need to know about the condition. We’ll cover causes and risk factors, diagnosis, signs, symptoms, treatment and therapy options, resources, and more. Additionally, if you go on to pursue legal help for your medical malpractice case, we’ll provide you and your family with the resources and information necessary to find the right birth injury lawyer.

There are a number of ways to get in touch with our Michigan birth injury lawyers. We are standing by 24/7 to answer your legal questions. To begin your free case review or to speak with a member of our team, contact Michigan Cerebral Palsy Attorneys in any of the following ways:

Toll-Free Phone: Call us toll-free at (888) 592-1857
Online: Fill out our online contact form here
Live Chat: Press the Live Chat icon you see to the left of your screen

Contact Our Team


Breaking Down the Term Cerebral Palsy

Definition of Cerebral Palsy - Michigan Cerebral Palsy Attorneys

What Are the Types of Cerebral Palsy?

The following four main classifications of CP reflect different damaged areas of the brain and their corresponding movement impairments:

  • Types of Cerebral Palsy

    Click to enlarge

    Spastic Cerebral Palsy: Occurring the most frequently, spastic CP covers 80% of all cerebral palsy cases. Damaged areas in the central nervous system send responses to the body that result in muscular tension (hypertonia) and mobility impairments. Other complications of spastic cerebral palsy include muscle spasms, muscular pain or tightness, arthritis, and tendinitis.

  • Ataxic CP: Ataxic CP occurs in 10% of cases at most and is caused by damage to the cerebellum. The effects of ataxic CP include decreased muscle tone (hypotonia), tremors, impairments to motor functions, balance impediments, and visual and/or auditory processing difficulties.
  • Athetoid/Dyskinetic CP: Athetoid CP is characterized by mixed muscle tone—the child will have both hypertonia (muscular tension) and hypotonia (decreased muscle tone). Effects and complications of Athetoid CP include trouble sitting or standing in an upright position, difficulty with fine motor functions (like holding small objects), and difficulty moving hands to a certain spot (for instance, reaching for an object).
  • Mixed CP: This is a form of CP in which parts of the spastic, ataxic, or athetoid forms are simultaneously present.

The following terms classify CP in terms of affected limbs:

  • Body Parts Affected by Cerebral Palsy: Classification Based on Limb Involvement

    Click to enlarge

    Hemiplegia, which explains the forms of CP in which the arm and leg on one side of the body are affected, is also known as hemiparesis. Hemiplegia is most commonly associated with spastic CP.

  • Diplegia, which affects limbs on the opposite sides of the body (such as both legs), is also called diparesis. Diplegia is most commonly the result of spastic cerebral palsy.
  • Quadriplegia, the form of CP characterized by the involvement of all four limbs, is also called quadriparesis. Quadriplegia is associated with spastic CP.
  • Monoplegia affects one limb (in most cases the arm). It is also known as monoparesis.
  • Triplegia is the form of CP in which three limbs (usually both arms and one leg). It is also called triparesis.
  • Pentaplegia, or pentaparesis, affects both legs, both arms, the head, and the neck.

While a number of other classification systems for CP exist, these are the most commonly used.

About Cerebral Palsy

In this section, we’ll cover the basics of CP. Take control of your child’s medical, financial, and emotional quality of life by reading through the following topics:

  1. Causes and risk factors of cerebral palsy
  2. Signs and symptoms of cerebral palsy
  3. Diagnosis of cerebral palsy
  4. Treatments and therapies for cerebral palsy

Michigan Lawyers Handling Cerebral Palsy Cases

Legal Help for Cerebral Palsy (CP) in Michigan - Michigan Cerebral Palsy AttorneysA diagnosis of cerebral palsy can be devastating to the parents of a newborn, infant or toddler. Since so many questions and uncertainties surround the condition, some people seek help through resources available to the public while others rely on the medical community. Regardless of where a family turns, the key is to be informed.

Throughout this site you’ll find information and resources specifically dedicated to the Michigan families dealing with a CP diagnosis. Our libraries and resource lists are here to help you learn about cerebral palsy, as well as to guide you and your family to the people and places that can help you find medical and financial help.

We encourage you to acquaint yourself with the information regarding CP and reach out for legal help if you believe your loved one’s cerebral palsy resulted from negligence. Contact our experienced and compassionate birth injury lawyers at Michigan Cerebral Palsy Attorneys in any of the following ways:

We handle cases throughout the U.S.

Call our offices toll-free at (888) 592-1857

Press the Live Chat tab to the left

Complete this online contact form


Contact Our Team


View our Cerebral Palsy Video Library here

Share this: